Taking Paths Less Traveled

Joyful Hiker. Mother. Teacher. Adventurer.

The concept behind anything Google, is that you are starting with a blank page, with endless possibilities. The creativity that Google Innovators are sharing with the education community is as exciting as it is inspiring. Using Google Slides to make your own story book, choose your own adventure story and integrate it all into a screen controlling app takes Google Slides immediately into the deeper realms of the SAMR Model.

Ryan Archer, a Google Certified Innovator, led our session at #CUE18 through a fast paced overview on how to take Google Slides from meh, to wow!

E-books, using Google Slides is something I can take back to my classroom on Monday. My students already know how to make presentations in Google Slides. Watch 8 and 9-year-olds figure out the internet and you will be amazed. My students surprise me every time. To make an E-book, simply change the size of your presentation by going to File-Page Setup- and change the size to 8×11. Then let your creativity take you away! How are the most mind blowing ideas so simple!

Take E-books a step further and make a comic or flip book animation. Comic templates are available with a simple Google search. I was most excited about the flipbook animation. It isn’t complicated. In each slide, move the characters a little bit in the direction you want them to move, use duplicate slide, and keep going just as if you had a stack of paper. We all have those students that only want to read the comic books… I swore I would never have a Captain Underpants book in my classroom until I saw how much the students devoured them. Now, those books are the most often to be in the book hospital due to over-loving. The students can create their own comics and animations now to share with their friends. Book reviews just got so much better!

Choosing your own adventure stories require quite the beastly set of tricks, and certainly is not for those who have difficulty with organization or have not mastered the basics of inserting and manipulating Google objects. A must-do for a choose your own adventure story is to start out with a story board. For the younger students, you might want to keep to two or three levels, but for the more advanced students, this could be quite elaborate.

Sylvia Duckworth’s Template is fantastic. In fact, she has an entire presentation available!  To explain quickly, each click in the slide takes you to a different slide, but you have to use layering of objects and put a transparent layer over all the other material you don’t want clicked on. If you understand layering, it isn’t hard at all. It might be a bit tricky to get the students to understand, but a layering lesson would likely give them the tools to proceed successfully. I can’t say this enough…. the students are SO good at this, that they’ll take what you give them and show you something new the next time you pass them by.

A final note from this Google Slides session at #CUE18.. remember to use the Google search tools feature “labeled for reuse”. If you are getting images from the “explore” button in Google Slides (Compass looking button on the bottom right hand corner), then your images will already be labeled for reuse. If your students are taking Images from a general Google search, then you need to teach them how to insert the source link. This is made even nicer for their final documents if you teach them how to edit the link to show simple text such as “Image Source”.

I want to give a special thanks to Ryan Archer for making this session at #CUE18 an enjoyable one.

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Taking Paths Less Traveled

Joyful Hiker. Mother. Teacher. Adventurer.


Thoughts and ramblings of a young adult

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